Living With Style: Decorating with Nature and Bringing the Outdoors In

By Sasha Witte
Gazette Columnist
Jun 23rd, 2018 

We live in such a beautiful part of the world and are lucky to be able to have lots of temperate weather. 

But if you, like me, can never get enough of nature, here are a few ideas for bringing the magic of the outdoors into your home environment.


Living With Style: Succulents

Succulents are easy to take care of and bring desert whimsy into the home.

Succulents are so easy to take care of and bring desert whimsy into the home.  From hanging air plants to potted terrariums to succulents tucked into a sea shell, there are desert plants for every taste. One of the most wonderful gifts that succulents give us is how easy and low maintenance they are to maintain!  My trick is an ice cube a week in each small succulent arrangement in my home.  It provides just the small amount of water each of these plant’s needs!

Verdant Centerpieces

For your next shindig, create a living centerpiece in the dining table using plants, flowers, and fruit! Here are four nifty ideas.

Fruit and Farm Centerpiece: Use a piece of weathered wood as a runner for your dining table. Top the wooden runner with tree branches, as well as fresh produce like plums, pears, tangerines, and apples. Nestle candles in with the fruit.

No Ordinary Cake Stand: Place a two or three-tiered cake stand in the center of the table. Layer it with an arrangement of bouquets in cups. Choose cups that are like in shape and size, and fill them up 75% with water before adding in flowers. Tulips, daffodils, and lilies make a winning combination.

Living with style: Roses

A bouquet of roses is a classic and always inspiring way of bringing nature indoors.

Leafy Green Display: Gather colorful large leaves and 4-5 cylindrical vases in a variety of sizes. (Neighborhood yard sales and antique shops can be a great place to find vases inexpensively!) Pour water into the vases and stick the leaves inside so they are stuck to the sides of the vase. 

Bouquet of Roses: Purchase long stemmed roses (or snip them from your backyard) and place each one in an individual slender vase. Trim the roses in various sizes so that the heights stagger amongst the table.

Coastal Chic Look            

The coastal chic look floats into lots of southern California homes, whether unintentionally or intentionally. From all the beach vacations we get to experience on a regular basis, it’s almost impossible to find a home here that’s lacking in seashells, whether purchased at the shell shop in Seal Beach or found buried in the sand.

Build on your coastal chic look and pair shells with vintage glass bottles in your bathroom. Driftwood, starfish, and sand dollars add to the earthy, organic experience. You can also put floral arrangements inside seashells! The trick is to fit some floral foam inside the shell for the plants to prop up on. Flowers and succulents also look wonderful coming out of holes in driftwood. You can purchase driftwood at any pet store next to the reptile terrariums.

Living with style: Nature art

Nature can become inexpensive art when featured on the wall.

Nature As Art

Manzanita branches, characterized by their spindly appearance, make beautiful pieces of hanging wall art. They are wonderful to look at and provide a sense of earthy calming above a headboard or in front of a window. You can also use them to hang jewelry, ornaments, or hanging air plants.

I hung a beautiful branch I found on a hike in the desert on the wall in my guest bedroom.  It creates a wonderful and sculptural art element!


Pebble Filled Flower Bed

Living with Style; Pebble

A pebble filled floral or succulent arrangement helps roots keep moist and adds to the visual delight!

Keep an indoor flower pot neat and tidy by spreading pebbles in a layer over the top of the soil. The stones will act as a barrier for dirt, while still allowing the flower roots access to more water for absorption.

Living with style: air plants

Air plants and even succulents tucked into shells and hung from a branch in a window is a magical way of introducing nature into your environment!

This can be used with indoor succulent pots too!

Small Is Wonderful

Floral arrangements don’t have to be large to be special.  Sometimes I think a single rose in a vase guides my eye to taking in its beauty in a way that is just as special, but different from when it is part of a grouping.

Have fun decorating with nature!

Sasha Witte can be reached at or (562) 434-8824.


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